English Scones

englishscones
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Quick Facts:

Makes 10-12 scones

Ingredients:

2 1/2 cups Self Rising Biscuit Flour (I like White Lily) (Make your cups lightly packed)
1 Tablespoon of sugar
1/4 cup shortening or butter or a combination of both.
1 cup plus 2 Tablespoons milk (can be low-fat)
A little melted butter and milk to glaze

Recipe Description:

Light and fluffy and a perfect backdrop for butter and Jam or jam and cream, these scones are an English teatime staple. It is important to not overwork the dough when adding the milk. The dough is patted out and folded instead of kneading to resist stretching the gluten in the flour and yielding a light tender scone. Be sure to use biscuit or soft wheat flour. Regular all-purpose flour has too much gluten and the scones will be tougher and flatter.

Directions:

Rub the shortening into the flour, pressing shortening into flakes. You can uses a food processor for this, but turn out the mixture into a large bowl and run your fingers through, pressing out any large bits of shortening. Do not rub the fat in completely. Add the sugar.

Pour in most of the milk and using a table or palate knife, stir and cut through the mixture until the milk is evenly absorbed. You need a slightly sticky dough. Add in the rest of the milk of you need it.

Turn the dough out on a floured surface and pat lightly to smooth out the consistency. Flatten the dough into a rectangle by patting gently with your hands and fold into three. Sprinkle with flour as you go to prevent sticking to the table. Pat out the dough again and fold into three. Repeat one more time.

Pat or roll out the dough to 3/4 inch thick and cut out with a 1 1/2 or 2 inch cutter. Use a fluted cutter if you have it and dip the cutter in flour for each cut.

Reshape the scraps into a ball and pat out again to make more scones. When you bring the scraps together, try to keep the cut edges together so the mass forms easily. You can also pat out and fold over the dough as above to smooth it out.

Arrange the cut scones on a lightly greased tray and bake at 425 for 15 to 17 minutes After baking, glaze with a little melted butter mixed with a little milk if desired. You can also sprinkle with sugar if you like.

Variation:

Traditionally scones are plain but you can add Fruit Scones: 1/4 cup currants or golden raisins Cheese Scones; 1/4 cup finely shredded sharp cheddar and 1/4 tsp dry mustard. Add these ingredients after rubbing in the fat, before you add the milk.

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